28 November 2016 - The following open letter was sent to the Green Party of Canada today, urging the party to maintain its support for the limited form of BDS which was adopted at a convention this summer. Greens will revisit that motion at a special general meeting in Calgary next weekend, following opposition to the party’s position from leader Elizabeth May.
Signed by Naomi Klein, Noam Chomsky, Bruce Cockburn and over 70 other prominent activists, academics, artists and intellectuals, the letter calls on Green Party members to reject pressure to “reverse or weaken the vote to support Palestinian rights.”
As Israel’s illegal military occupation approaches a half-century, it’s long past time for concrete international action to pressure its government to reverse course. The Green Party of Canada’s recent vote to support “the use of divestment, boycott and sanctions (BDS) that are targeted at those sectors of Israel’s economy and society which profit from the ongoing occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territories” represents such a measure.
Without international pressure, Israel will continue to steal Palestinian land, demolish olive groves, build Jewish-only roads, imprison without due process and impose collective punishment on innocent Palestinians. It will continue to violate international law and dominate a defenceless people.
Canadians cannot wash their hands of Palestinians’ plight. Ottawa has long been a close ally of Israel and each year registered Canadian charities channel millions of dollars to projects supporting Israel’s powerful military and illegal settlements.
We urge you not to succumb to political pressure to reverse or weaken the vote to support Palestinian rights. Your position is consistent with – indeed required by – the Fourth Geneva Convention, and reflects the vote of the vast majority of UN member states. It even aligns with official Canadian policy.
And, most importantly, it’s a contribution to the nonviolent campaign to advance Palestinian rights.
Naomi Klein - Author, Social Activist and Filmmaker
Noam Chomsky - Professor Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tariq Ali - Writer, Journalist and Filmmaker
Bruce Cockburn, OC - Singer, Songwriter and Guitarist
~from Greens should stick with BDS.